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The International Organization for Migration

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) was founded in 1951 and is the leading intergovernmental organization in the field of migration. Since September 2016 IOM has been a UN-related organization. IOM today has a membership of 169 states, with a further 8 having observer status.

IOM has a key role in the area for human mobility and works on a global basis to ensure the humane and orderly handling of migration, to promote international cooperation on migration issues and to provide humanitarian assistance to migrants in need. This work includes enhancing the respect for the human rights of migrants in accordance with international law, assisting States to facilitate the integration of migrants in their new environment and developing programmes that facilitate voluntary return and reintegration of displaced persons.
IOM has its head office in Geneva (Switzerland) with offices in some 140 countries, more than 400 field locations and 1,710 active projects. In 2017 IOM’s annual operating expenditure was more than 1.5 billion US dollars. Mr. William Lacy Swing has been the Director General of IOM since October 2008.
The Council is the highest authority of the IOM and meets once every year in Geneva. The Council consists of member states and observer states, but it is only member states that have voting rights. Under the Council is the Standing Committee on Programmes and Finance that meets twice a year to examine and review policies, programmes, activities, budgets etc.
On September 19, 2016 the United Nations General Assembly adopted a set of commitments to enhance the protection of refugees and migrants. These commitments are known as the New York Declaration on Refugees and Migrants. It paves the way for the adoption of two new global compacts in 2018: the Global Compact on Refugees and the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. The Global Compact for Migration is an intergovernmental process led by the UN Member States. These negotiations will be serviced by the UN Secretariat, with IOM providing policy and technical expertise required.
Denmark supports a wide spectrum of IOM projects to strengthen the handling of migration in a number of countries. In 2018 Denmark will make a core contribution to IOM.

    Director General      Mr. William Lacy Swing
    Deputy Director General      Mrs. Laura Thompson
    Denmark’s contribution in 2017     DKK 11.2 million

Intermediate Strategy for Denmark's Development Cooperation with the International Organization for Migration

For further information, please see

Edited 18 December 2018